San Jose State University

Location: San Jose, California
Website: http://www.sjsu.edu
Type: Public
Federal Circuit: 9th Circuit

Speech Code Rating

San Jose State University has been given the speech code rating Yellow. Yellow light colleges and universities are those institutions with at least one ambiguous policy that too easily encourages administrative abuse and arbitrary application. Read more here.

Yellow Light Policies
  • Student Conduct Code 13-14

    Speech Code Category: Internet Usage Policies

    Use of computing facilities and resources to send obscene or intimidating and abusive messages.

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  • Student Conduct Code 13-14

    Speech Code Category: Policies on Tolerance, Respect, and Civility

    Students are expected to be good citizens and to engage in responsible behaviors that reflect well upon their university, to be civil to one another and to others in the campus community, and contribute positively to student and university life.

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  • Housing License Agreement: Posting Policy 13-14

    Speech Code Category: Posting Policies

    The Director of University Housing Services or his/her designee(s) must approve any postings found within University Housing facilities. Postings must adhere to the UHS Posting and Distribution Policy. Postings should respect the mission and values of the university residence halls, which include providing all residents with a comfortable living environment and sense of community. Posters should not engage in gratuitously offensive expression that might be destructive of the desired community.

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  • Student Email Usage Guidelines 13-14

    Speech Code Category: Internet Usage Policies

    Users are prohibited from using the system for any unethical purposes, including but not limited to plagiarism, pornography, violence, gambling, racism, harassment or any illegal activity.

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  • Student Organization Code of Conduct: Disorderly Conduct 13-14

    Speech Code Category: Policies on Tolerance, Respect, and Civility

    Any offensive or disorderly act or display which interferes with the rights of others.

    Harassment, threats, physical abuse, intimidation or the threat of physical abuse, including bias-related incidents.

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  • Implementation of Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and Related Sexual Harassment/Violence Legislation for CSU Students – Executive Order 1072 13-14

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies

    “Sexual Harassment” is unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that includes, but is not limited to: sexual violence; sexual advances; requests for sexual favors; indecent exposure; and other verbal, nonverbal or physical unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature, where such conduct is sufficiently severe, persistent or pervasive that its effect, whether or not intended, could be considered by a reasonable person in the shoes of the individual, and is in fact considered by the individual, as limiting the individual’s ability to participate in or benefit from the services, activities or opportunities offered by the university. Sexual harassment also includes gender-based harassment, which may include acts of verbal, non-verbal or physical aggression, intimidation or hostility based on sex or sex-stereotyping, even if those acts do not involve conduct of a sexual nature.

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  • Title IX Notice of Nondiscrimination 13-14

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies

    Sexual Harassment is unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that includes, but is not limited to, sexual violence, sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, indecent exposure and other verbal, nonverbal or physical unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature, where such conduct is sufficiently severe, persistent or pervasive that its effect, whether or not intended, could be considered by a reasonable person in the shoes of the individual, and is in fact considered by the individual, as limiting the individual’s ability to participate in or benefit from the services, activities or opportunities offered by the university. Sexual harassment also includes gender-based harassment, which may include acts of verbal, non-verbal or physical aggression, intimidation or hostility based on sex or sex-stereotyping, even if those acts do not involve conduct of a sexual nature.

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  • Housing License Agreement: Harassment and/or Assault 13-14

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies

    Any form of activity, whether covert or overt, that creates a threatening or harassing environment for any UHS resident, guest, or staff member will be handled judicially and may be grounds for immediate disciplinary action, revocation of the Housing License Agreement, and criminal prosecution.

    Verbal harassment is verbal behavior, either in words or gestures, which dominates, controls, or does another person harm. Verbal harassment occurs when unwelcome speech or conduct is so severe, persistent, or pervasive that it interferes with an employee’s work performance or a resident’s ability to participate in or benefit from an educational activity or program, or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive working, living, or educational environment.

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Green Light Policies
  • Freedom of Speech and Artistic Expression 13-14

    Speech Code Category: Advertised Commitments to Free Expression

    San Jose State University formally reaffirms its commitment to freedom of speech and artistic expression through this presidential directive. Freedom of speech in this context will be taken to encompass all forms of communication and artistic expression as well as the freedom to listen, watch, protest, or otherwise participate in such communication.

    Because freedom of speech and expression play such a critical role in the functioning of a university, undue interference with the exercise of these freedoms by members of the San Jose State University community may constitute grounds for resort to law or other formal action.

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  • Systemwide Policy Prohibiting Discrimination, Harassment and Retaliation Against Students and Systemwide Procedure for Handling Discrimination, Harassment and Retaliation Complaints by Students 13-14

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies

    Harassment means unwelcome conduct engaged in because of a Protected Status that is sufficiently severe, persistent or pervasive that its effect, whether or not intended, could be considered by a reasonable person in the shoes of the Student, and is in fact considered by the Student, as limiting the Student's ability to participate in or benefit from the services, activities or opportunities offered by the University.

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This school does not have any media coverage at this time.
  • ‘California Watch’: No Free Speech at California Colleges

    January 7, 2011

    Free speech is not safe at California colleges—not by a long shot. That’s what investigative reporter Erica Perez found in FIRE’s 2011 speech code report, as she wrote yesterday for California Watch: A new report from a national free speech advocacy organization found most of the four-year universities it surveyed had speech codes that substantially limit students’ freedom of speech, including dozens of colleges in California. [...] Of the 33 California universities the organization rated, 64 percent got a red light, including San Diego State University, UC Santa Cruz and Claremont McKenna College. About 36 percent got a yellow light, including UC Berkeley, Occidental College and San Jose State University. […]

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  • Victory for Free Speech at San Jose State University: Administrators Lead the Way

    February 8, 2010

    There is good news today for students living in the residence halls at San Jose State University (SJSU). The housing department has revised several restrictive policies, including a previous FIRE Speech Code of the Month, thanks to the efforts of administrators seeking to protect the free speech rights of SJSU students. In April 2009, FIRE named SJSU our Speech Code of the Month for a housing policy providing that Any form of activity, whether covert or overt, that creates a significantly uncomfortable, threatening, or harassing environment for any UHS resident or guest will be handled judicially and may be grounds […]

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  • Speech Code of the Month: San Jose State University

    April 1, 2009

    FIRE announces its Speech Code of the Month for April 2009: San Jose State University (SJSU). SJSU’s housing department maintains a policy on “harassment and/or assault” which provides: Any form of activity, whether covert or overt, that creates a significantly uncomfortable, threatening, or harassing environment for any UHS resident or guest will be handled judicially and may be grounds for immediate disciplinary action, revocation of the Housing License Agreement, and criminal prosecution. The conduct does not have to be intended to harass. The conduct is evaluated from the complainant’s perspective. The policy then provides examples of the types of conduct […]

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  • California Court Misses the Point on Freedom of Conscience

    August 17, 2006

    On Monday, a federal court in California issued what I find to be a disturbing opinion addressing the freedom of conscience of an education student at San Jose State University (SJSU). Plaintiff Stephen M. Head is an education student at SJSU who self-identifies as “libertarian or conservative” and as a Christian. He filed a pro se lawsuit (that is, representing himself without an attorney) against the university alleging, among other things, that his professor had violated his free speech rights by telling him that he was “unfit to teach” because of comments he made about immigration policy and by forbidding […]

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